The Department of Foreign Affairs on Thursday, September 3, repatriated a total of 361 distressed OFWs from Lebanon.
The chartered flight via Philippine Airlines flight PR-8681 carrying the OFWs from Beirut landed at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) at around 8:11 pm.
DFA Sends Home 361 Distressed OFWs from Lebanon
According to Cielo Villaluna, PAL spokesperson, the airline deployed its 370-seater Boeing 777-300 aircraft, with tail no. RP-C7778 for the repatriation of the OFWs, reported the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
The flight left for the Lebanon capital at around 5:11 pm Wednesday, arriving at the Rafic Hariri International Airport at around 8:30 p.m. same day local time. The PAL flight carrying the OFWs departed for Manila two hours later.
The said flight was second of the repatriation flights from Lebanon following the massive chemical explosion at a port in the capital last month.
Upon arrival in Manila, the passengers were briefed by personnel of the Bureau of Quarantine, Philippine Coast Guard, and PAL representatives on the required testing and quarantine protocols.
The repatriated OFWs were provided the PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) COVID-19 tests and were provided with land transfers to their designated quarantine facilities where they will stay until the test results are released, Villaluna said.
The DFA said that it is set to send another chartered flight from Beirut to cater to other distressed Filipinos who wish to be repatriated.
In a separate update shared by the Philippine Embassy in Lebanon, it noted that overseas Filipinos who earlier enlisted then backed out from its free repatriation will be blacklisted and would not be allowed to join the next evacuation flights.
The Philippine Embassy in Lebanon explained that not showing up on the day of scheduled evacuation is a waste of Filipino taxpayers’ money.
The DFA earlier said that there are around 31,000 Filipinos in Lebanon.
It added that they have been offering free repatriation even before the COVID-19 pandemic struck to “arrest the worsening condition of Filipinos in the country due to economic woes.”
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